There's a big climate change report coming out on Monday. Your feed is going to be filled with all of the horrible things that a warming climate will do. The fact that there are things we can do about it will be relegated to maybe a paragraph, more likely a sentence.
I have been working on a podcast focused on climate solutions (@how2saveaplanet) for a year now and working on it has crystallized things that I thought were not great about climate reporting generally (things, to be clear) that I have done. We need more attention on solutions
There have been a lot of parallels made between climate and covid - I HAVE MADE THEM - collective problem in need of a collective solution. But one big difference is that for covid what we mostly needed to do is... stay home.
I felt so impotent during so much of covid because it felt really hard to believe that me sitting on my couch watching the back catalog of Happy Endings was doing anything to help. I mean, it was. But it was hard to feel like it was. To fix climate though we need you.
We don't need you to stay home. We need you - yes you - who care about climate, to DO things. And no, this is not where I tell you to shop differently.
We need you to go to planning board meetings and push against development in places we know will burn/flood
etc and push FOR development in safer places. We need you to push for mass transit. We need you to run for office...and to run the people halting action out of office.
We need you to dream. So much of how we talk about climate change is about what we will lose but if we adapt to climate realities in ways that emphasize humanity. it has a domino effect.
Yes, you may have to fly less. But you can take longer to travel, for example, if you had 5, 10, 15 weeks vacation instead of 2 if you're lucky, no?
Yes, more of us may have to go car free. But the average person in the US spends ~15% of their household income on car ownership. For short commutes. Protected bike lanes and mass transit can be incredible.
I often joke that mass transit would be more palatable if it adopted the slogan "you can always get home from the bar after drinking." I've owned a car for a year and holy shirtballs is it more expensive and requires more thinking than my metrocard.
We also need you to get weird: we know we have the technology to keep emissions below 2C. The tech is there. What we need is the will, the desire, and the effort. This thing we are trying? Nobody's really ever tried it before.
We can learn from past social movements but there's TONS of room for creativity and oddity. One of my proudest moments as a journalist is when a reader told me they'd gotten a denialist family member to accept the science b/c of one of my stories. Which featured a poop analogy.
And if you're a journalist I strongly recommend you check out the @soljourno they have guided a lot of my thinking.

Also: we need to be critical of solutions too. Sometimes thinks we think will work - won't. That's ok. We need to see a thing isn't working so we can pivot!
Even before the pandemic most people in the US felt like the way we were living was untenable. We either didn't have enough money, or time, or both. Social connections were fraying. Adapting to and mitigating climate change is a chance to fix those things too.
And on this note, I'm putting on an outside shirt and going on a 20 mile bike ride (I hope) that includes a rail trail cause someone had the imagination to turns rails into trails and some people had the gumption to come together and do it.

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Keep Current with Kendra "Gloom is My Beat" Pierre-Louis

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More from @KendraWrites

5 Aug
"Diers's story sounds familiar—a tale of coping with scant water supplies that are now the norm when speaking about California, Idaho, or Nevada. But Diers doesn't live out West. He lives in New Hampshire. "
Another thing that I had really not thought about is the way irrigated water we use on agricultural land effectively disappears.

If I brush my teeth that water goes down pipes where it can be reclaimed and recycled. But on ag land.... that water evaporates.
Anyway, I can't stop thinking about this: “Agriculture in the US has been impressive in terms of productivity,” said Isaya Kisekka,. “But we are reaching the limit where our system and changing climate cannot sustain it.”
Read 4 tweets
2 Aug
If you are under the age of 45 or so...you will be surprised to learn that homelessness is a manufactured problem. There used to be far fewer people without homes because we had a lot more programs to prevent people from ending up uhoused.*
*deleted earlier tweet cause I wanted to be more precise with my language.

I grew up with visible homelessness my whole life and only learned relatively recently that this was a new phenomena we created.
One of the reasons we need to learn about racism in this country is because it became much easier for the country to cut social programs when they could show white people that because of the Civil Rights act those programs would also be extended to Black people.
Read 4 tweets
1 Aug
Ok going off to do non-twitter things, BUT, a thing that has been bugging me is when news reports say that the covid "surge" is because of Delta. No. It's because of unvaccinated people.
Obviously, this isn't true in locations that don't have access to the vaccines. But it reminds me of the language around car "accidents." they aren't accidents. They're often because of deliberate choices people are making or bad road design or both.
Delta is surging in many locales where people are choosing not to vaccinate. We exist in relationship with the virus and the choices we (as a society) are making are allowing the virus to spread.

Only time we seem to focus on individuals is when we're talking about poor people.
Read 4 tweets
1 Aug
I feel really out of the loop on covid discourse cause

1. I've been mostly off social for the past few weeks
2. I never stopped wearing a mask and still have done nothing unmasked indoors around strangers. My first unmasked post-vaxx indoor event was a dentist's visit.
3. The largest group of people I have been around indoors unmasked is... 3 (including a toddler too small to be vaxxed). It's summer and I'd rather be hot and sweaty outdoors then risking things indoors. I'm really confused about the push for indoors right now.
(I'm not talking about school/childcare, I get that) but it just seems saner to pay restaurants etc lost revenue on indoor stuff and keep doing stuff outdoors until we start mandating vaccines?
Read 4 tweets
25 Jun
It's worth pointing out that while most of the attention regarding the heatwave is going to be on the record breaking highs next week what matters arguably more in terms of human health is the fact that the overnight lows are also going to be high. /1
Many people can handle temporary high temperatures (small children, the elderly and people on certain medications are more sensitive), but being in heat all day is physically taxing. The body needs a rest and in the past that used to come with overnight lows. /2
This is why in the old days before AC (which to be clear people still died), people dealt with the heat by sleeping outside. The pics are from the Nebraska state capitol and a NYC fire escape respectively /3 people lseeping at nebraska state capitolpeople sleeping on fire escapes
Read 15 tweets

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